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Book TV After Words

David Burstein Education. (2013) 'Fast Future How the Milennial Generaion is Shaping Our World.'

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  CSPAN    Book TV After Words    David Burstein  Education.  (2013) 'Fast Future  
   How the Milennial Generaion is Shaping Our World.'  

    March 25, 2013
    12:00 - 1:00am EDT  

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somebody who was in opposition to the school. i didn't want it to be just sort of an uncritical love letter. the school contains a lot of contradictions, and i wanted to bring those out, and angela, of course -- i wanted to represent a woman, and her life is fascinating. and an african-american. i couldn't resist. and is brilliant.
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and all three are still -- they're still doing what they were doing. they never in the mid-1r07dz or '80s, never slowed down or -- i mean, tom switched his focus but is still working for his beliefs. their beliefs may have changed over the years, but not terribly much, and they're still fighting for them, and i think that's inspiring. >> thanks a million. >> thank you. thank you very much. [applause] >> up next, after words with guest host, s.e. cupp. this week, david burstein, and his book, "fast future: how the
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millenial generation is shaping our world. "o'he argues those between 18 and 30 years of age are more ethnically diverse and digitally tuned in an others and millenials are more influence shall and a fast moving, more integrated world. the program lasts about an hour. >> david, you're a millenial, writing about millenials. how old are you? >> guest: i'm 24. >> host: give me your background. where kid did you grow up? >> guest: i grew up in western connecticut, an hour out of new york city, and as a student in high school i started the film festival for high school students in which we saw great films about young people, issues about bullying and teen south s,
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this is in 2003, way before being part of the national conversation, and seeing the power of film impacting my generation, and from that decided to make a film about the election in 2008, and went around the country interviewing members of congress about why they thought more young people weren't voting, and trying to get my peers to vote, which led into starting an organization called generation 18, which registered 25,000 new voters in 2008, and then we did a similar film in 2012, and while doing all that i went to nyu, where i graduated. >> host: i understand we both were part of the same program there? >> guest: yes. we both went to gal latin. >> it allows you to craft your own discipline and you can cross-discipline. >> guest: my concentration was the intersection of film, technology and politics, with an
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emphasis on youth and social change. >> host: so your dedication page read in part, to my mother and father, the greatest boomers i know. let talk about their generation for a minute. the different mistakes they may have made. what's you're overall read on baby-boomers. >> guest: the boomer generation is an incredibly important generation in our nation's history. much of what is going on today in america would not have been possible without them. the civil rights movement, which they played a leading role in pushing that forward, and ending the war in vietnam, and changing the wail we viewed citizen involvement in government, changing the way we think about our elected officials and the ability to create upstart movements. think all that was incredibly important. the beginning of the women's movement, all that great activism they produced, and
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that -- all of that, we're seeing that play out today. whether it's the election of barack barack obama or continued advancement of women in congress. there's a lot of work left undone, and i think that there's -- we now spend 3/4 of our entitlement money on people who are over the age of 30. used to be we spent 3/4 on people under the age of 30. it's not a question of generational warfare, but i think we need to have a conversation about how we're dividing our priorities. this is not a generation that expects to get those entitlements. my general has any belief the government is going to give them that money -- >> host: well, the activism you talked about, from the baby-boomer generation, that activism that has trickled down
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to millenials or do you see them as more politically apathetic? >> guest: i think the activism of that generation was very much instilled in the millenials, the children of the boomers, as we were growing up. the generation of people who read us the news, and taught this idea of values and the way that you should be involved in civic engagement and responsibility, and brought a lot of that spirit into this generation, but i think the way we look at activism is totally different. the boomer generation believed in activism in the streets. marching, protesting. and our generation believes you can be an activist by creating a business that changes the way the world is thinking about energy, for instance. a lot of young people are starting green energy and alternative energy companies. we believe that you can do it through technology. all these ways that are very powerful. they're just not seen. they're not seen by everyone
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else. i think that is part of the challenge that we face. people say we're apathetic and lazy because the activism is not in your face and not out there. >> host: i'm sure they're true but they're also the activism is lazy because wait so easy. you october go online and sign an online petition or tweet something and that it counted as activism. >> guest: i think that idea has been overplayed, that somehow people in this generation feel they press a button and tweet and they think they changed the world. i don't know anyone who felt this way. what is happening now is there's greater awareness and accessible towards involvement in social activity. and that's a good thing. there are more people who are having some level of access to that process than not, and the hope is that for some of those people, in the long term, that will develop into more, and that will develop into greater engagement. everything we know about how
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people develop says that if you introduce a habit or introduce on idea to someone when they're young and impressionable in their formative years, later on that something becomes part of their life. so the idea that people are texting five dollars, that's great. we have more young people who are being donors than ever before, and hopefully that means in the future people will believe that it's a good thing to give money and to make donations as they get older. so i think that it's not that we're losing the people who -- the activists who were doing the hard work. we're also gaining people with at least a surface level engagement that can grow over time. >> host: well, we'll return to politics in a bit. first, describe to me a millenial. what are the values of that generation? what are their goals? what's their identity? challenges? their assets. what do they bring to the table? paint a picture for me. >> guest: this is a generation that came of age in a period
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that i call the fast future. thus the title of the book. which means in the past ten years this generation has been growing up, our world has gone through an accelerated pace of change. the amount of change that take place today in one year is equal to the amount of change that took place in some entire centuries. and once a generation we have these kind of revolution that shifts fundamentals of our economy. you look at the industry evolution, the introduction of the automobile, all these changes in our society are powered by exponential technology, which changes the pace of everything from how we communicate and how fast we expect people to respond to things, to our political system and the pace of how quickly things happen and being on constant -- in a constant feedback loop. the ability to trade stocks in nanoseconds. so, millenials are at the forefront of that. we understand that as reality. so, other generations are running around saying, how do we
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adapt? good forward any fast-paced world. the millenials are taking it all in stride because that's the reality of how we agree up, and also brought the sense of ease and adaptability and the ability to be resilient, the economic crisis, which, wow, has led to incredible youth unemployment, and incredible debt for young people. young people are optimistic about their long-term economic future because they see in one year it could be totally different. we saw how quickly it started and how quickly it might go away. so there's a sense that the other -- the grass is greener on the other side and we have the ability to know we'll get there. so there's a sense of optimism, a sense of social mindedness which came out of 9/11, very formative experience in the minds of this generation, seeing our country in that moment and feeling this sort of civic spirit, which i think was really
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ingrained in the den racing. a surge in applications to the pears corps and the military and a world in the past ten years which has been focused on all the terrible things you think about the tenor of the international conversation over the past ten years it's about, oh, my god, our world is in trouble, terrible things going on. millenials have seen that and want to do something about it, and we have the ability to do something about it because we have the ability to scale action in a way that previous generations haven't. >> host: how is growing up in the midst of what is essentially been a ten-year war, war on terror -- how has that shaped the millenial viewpoint? >> guest: made this generation realize we are part of a global would. this is the first global generation who is cognizant of the rest of the world being deeply related to us. you may have been able to in some ways, live under a rock in previous generations and by
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disconnected from the rest of the world and think about your country only. i think we recognize that, and i think fighting two wars made this generation -- first of all, remember, this generation is the one fighting these wars. it's overwhelmingly people in this generation who had the experience of fighting these two wars and made the generation perhaps weary of the importance of going into battle and how much we need to do that, and perhaps not necessarily a generation of peace-nics but less enthusiastic about military action in the future. that's in the country as a whole. there's a sense of fatigue around military involvement. what is interesting is that we have lived in a time period without having to actually make any sacrifice around the fact that we've been at war. there's no -- you can walk down the street. there's no signs that we're at
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war for the past ten years, and i think that is also something that is different about this generation as opposed to the generation that cam of age in world war ii which it was an unavoidable part of daily life and everybody was aware of that. so perhaps it shaped our consciousness a little bit less. >> host: mentioned the global awareness. let's talk about globalization for a minute. there's the sort of antonio, michael hart nihilistic view of globalization in empire. there's optimists like thomas friedman. what is the millenial view on globalization? is it a good thing, a bad thing, inevitable? what's their outlook? >> guest: i think for millenials it's reality. and that perhaps -- we have head a debate for 25 plus years, even longer than that in this country, about, should we enter a world of globalization or not?
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we're here. that's the world we're living in. i call this generation a proreality generation. which is, on any number of issues where it seems older generations are still having a debate. this generation sees this is the reality of our world. it may be good, may be bad, but this is the framework we have to work within, and we're not going to make the world nongloballized. there's just not a way to do that. in this particular moment. >> host: there was an idea that globalization would help export democracy. like a 20-year-old, 15-year-old idea. do you think millenials, millenial generation, shares that optimism in the kinds of project that globalization can accomplish in third worlds and developing countries? >> guest: i think that technology has certainly been a force that has happened do that. and technology perhaps is the greatest globalizer, because
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platforms in a lot of cases are country agnostic. there are web sites and people of content, leaving aside issues of censorship and things like that, but in general there is an ability for me to be on a web site and be in touch with people all over the world, and when you think about what happened in the middle east and the arab spring and think about part of that this, whole idea that joseph nigh talks about the smartpower and hillary clinton did a lot of work on that as well. that culture and ideas and the ability for people to know what is going on in other parts of the world, and be inspired by that. there's a lot of that going on in terms of exchange of ideas between global piers and the ability for -- during the protests in wisconsin, on the collective bargaining issues, there were young people holding up signs that said, walk like an egyptian, which i thought was a great way of showing that global
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connection. those people were inspired with what was going on in the arab spring around the same time, and there was some kind of -- young people holding up the signs, having that solidarity. so that a good way to think about the ability on both ways, both from the west to other countries and other countries back to the west, that young people are being inspired and engaged by global peers. >> host: there's been criticism that young people have not been engaged in politics, in meaningful ways, and maybe their engagement feels cursory or superficial. is that fair? >> guest: i don't think that's fair. if you look at the last two election cycles. youth voter turnout was incredibly high. some of the highest on record. the enthusiasm, i would characterize 2012 versus 2008 in terms of the number of young people campaigning, the number of people attending rallies was decrease, but at the end of the day, the voter participation was
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the same. so i think that's didn't -- on the electoral side that's important. what you're not seeing as much is young people willing to run for office. in the kind of numbers they should right now there's only one member of the united states congress who is under the age of 30. and i think that's a pretty shocking statistic, especially since we just swore in the 138th congress and celebrated how all the diversity and the numbers of women and the numbers of minorities and different sexual orientations. all that incredible history, at the same time we're looking at the oldest congress in history. one of the oldest congresses we've ever seen. aaron shock, the congressman from illinois said the other day that if you got all the members of congress under 40 together in a room, and locked the door, that they would solve all the problems and could get everything done. i think that's a little overstatement but i think there's something to be said for
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the perspective of young people in government, getting people who are going into social entrepreneurship, people who are saying, why would i run for congress when i could go build a school in africa for -- and see my impact in one year? why whoa i get involved in that process? if you think about why people used to go into public service, you think about someone like ted kennedy or jack kemp or these great leaders who went in to help people, because they cared and thought it was form of service. i don't think if those people were young today they wouldn't do that. they would focus on education in inner cities and that's what many of them did in the later parts of their lives. so, we need to call young people book to service. we need to call the sort of brain drain of all these great young talent going out of politics and into doing great work in other sectors, back into the political process. >> host: how does the political class and the current apparatus
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attract more young people? is it irreparable. >> guest: it's very difficult because young people going into politics, a lot of them are coming through the same sort of career approach, rising up through the ranks of running for city council and then wanting to run -- and a young career politician is no better than an old career politician. someone who has amibition in the future. we need people with a sense of service and commitment back in politics. there needs to be a generational commitment to do this, and that's -- this generation needs to realize the importance. if you have a group of people together to do this, then you could make an impact. that's -- itch i'm one person who believes that, i'm not going to do it. you're going to be shrub like a jim webb who came into congress thinking that he could have an impact ask then sort of checked out and said there's no role for
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one person. if you don't have a coalition of people willing to come together and solve problems, and that is what this generation needs. so we need, to as a generation, come together and realize that importance of having a come jesus moment and run as a group. >> host: do you think the current existing system ignores millenials and at their peril? >> guest: i think so. we're in a moment where everything we're talking about is about generational issues. everything we're talking about is about demographics, about long-term commitments and 0 where we invest and put our priorities. that's all that's on the table from the fiscal cliff to eave conversation we're having, and millenials are absent from that conversation. not for lack of wanting to be, but for lack of politicians listening. and for not taking this generation seriously.
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there's a lot of desire by politicians to take young people into account in terms of education because they see a direct connection to young people. but young people don't just care about student loans and what -- how education system is going to be better, although we care about those things very much. we care below out the issues that older americans care about. we care about how we're -- where we're investing as a country. we care about these things and i think politicians have incorrectly assessed why that happened. young people took care of that deficit and debt issue years ago if you go back to polling young people. they said that was an important issue a long time ago. >> host: i'm sure that's true, but is it really true that young people are thinking about entitlement reform and long-term tax reform, that kind of thing? >> guest: i think they care about the basic principle behind it. i don't know that people in this generation -- anyone in this country has a detailed plan to
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address these things, except some people in congress. i think that we understand the principle behind needing to make decisions and not wanting to be stuck with having to pay this bill down the road. i think that's something that this generation has been aware of, because we've been talking about it for a long time. >> host: what -- and not just sort of general rising an entire generation, but what do you think the millenial view is on the current state of the economy? things are not good and not looking good particularly for the future of this generation. they might be optimistic, but they're also wrong in some sense. >> guest: well, i'm not sure they're wrong in the long term. the optimism is -- it's important to note this -- it's not everything is great, everything is fine, about it's an optimism geared toward the future will be better. and i think as a group of 80 million people, the largest generation in history, we
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believe that we might be able to play a role in doing that. you've seen already young people being job-creators. young people starting companies. this rise in entrepreneurialism, the number of young people starting businesses right out of college, 15% of students are actually starting businesses, which is up 300% from where it was 20 years ago. and i think that speaks to this generation, which had to become entrepreneurs and had to be self-starters out of necessity. we had to learn how to do that because of the economic hand we have been dealt, and it comes naturally to this generallation we're not a generation that reads instruction manuals so we know how to put things together and solve problems and fix it. so, i think you're going to see more of that. what i think the challenge is going to be is how we build scalable institutions, build bigger behemoth institutions. looking at facebook, which is
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arguably one of the most successful companies started by someone in this generation, they do not employ millions and millions of people or tens and thousands of people that a company like general electric does. so, that is the challenge. they're going to be many more smaller companies that millenials start and they'll be geared around the skills of the new economy, collaborative con expulsion around technology and social enterprise. >> host: how does that negatively affect a wal-mart or brick and mortar traditional company that employs millions of people, response for big chunk of our economy? how does that trickle down? >> guest: well, millenals are reshaping the fundamentals of the economy because we have a different value set that cares about commitment to the environment. almost every company hat has been started bay millenial has some kind of social back side to it in some way, whether it's a
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commitment from the beginning to being green or actually bake into the mission of the company, and this is a generation that is not buying homes. they're not getting married. the lowest car ownership in a long time. these are the basic fundamental concepts of our economy. people are going to -- no one ever thought about that, what if suddenly people didn't think it was val tubal buy a home? for a long time we based our economy on home ownership and marriage all these things. so, i'm not an economist. i don't know what the -- how that's actually going to transform the economic but it's something that the economists should be paying more attention to when we talk about young people not having a bright future and older people are incredibly pessimistic about this generation's future. at it because it's based on these big large purchases, home
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ownership and marriage. all those being delayedful the picture looks different. >> host: what kind of effects does facebook generation and the generation interested in creating facebook, like companies -- what does that have on the wal-marts? the traditional brick and mortar corporations that employ millions of people and are responsible for a huge chunk of our economy? how does that trickle down? >> guest: well, millenials are transforming the fundamentals of our economy. if you look at the ways millenials value how they're spending their moment you look at home ownership, look at marriage, automobile ownership, they're at their lowest levels in history. so, this generation is really pushing that kind of restructuring of the economy, and we're going to have to figure out how we handle that. >> host: that sounds like it could have a big impact on the economy. >> guest: absolutely will. this is not what the economists -- this is not what we base things on.
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we never had to ask the question, what if people didn't want to own a home? didn't want to buy a home? >> host: for a while we have been forcing homes on people. >> guest: exactly. part of it has to do with the economy and part of it is al a value shift, which is that for -- since then 1950s we baked this idea that home ownership was equivalent with community and major was equivalent with love, and i think when you ask millenials finding someone you love to spend the rest of your life with is important, that's say yes. but if you ask them getting married is an important piece of that, they're not just as enthusiastic. people in this generation will continue to get marriage but there's a shift in what that means to people, and i don't think it means this generation doesn't respect these institutions. it's that we view the fundamental essential things. about community and love as being important, and i you look how we're finding community, we
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don't believe we need to be in a house we own to have that community. we can find a multitude of communities and be part of them that aren't necessarily centered around our neighborhood or the people who live next to us and we can rent a home and still be part of a community. i think that is a big difference that we're going to have to figure out as a country, how we do that, and if you look at the kind of companies that people are createing, they're almost all of them have this social value inherent in them. almost not a single millenial owned company that doesn't have that social value. whether it being a green company or whether it's sort of baked into the -- you look at facebook's securities and exchange commission filing when they went public, they say in there -- this is a company with a social mission -- no company that that's if gone public has if said that before. say what you want about them, they're absolutely a company trying to make money, but that says something different about how this generation approaches business and what business is for. >> host: even wal-mart has gone
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green in many markets, probably -- >> guest: as a result of mill helpals pushing that. millenials say they'll switch brands, stop shopping somewhere if they find a brand that shares their values more than a current brand. millenials are willing to go work for companies that -- that pay them less if they have greater social impact. this is really important to this generation and it's not lost on these big companies. >> host: and it's coming as a result of free market pressure as you said. they're shopping elsewhere, voting with their feet, we with their wallets and not just social pressure. >> guest: which is another way that this generation is being activists. much harder to see study that marketers and brand people look at of people's values and preferences, but we are voting with our wallet, and i think that is in some cases more effective than launching a boycott and picketing outside of a single store, and that, frankly, not sustainable.
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>> host: we have seen that. let take a quick break and come back and pick this up in a minute. >> host: so, i want to return 0 to something we were talking about and that's the millenial impulse to sort of reject, eni've inadvertently, traditional institutions like marriage, for example, and home ownership. a book is out right now called "what to expect when no one is expecting" and it's an antiview of not a population boom but a coming population implosion. and the responsibility that millenials will have for that.
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what messages do you think millenials would respond to if one wanted to try and encourage those traditional institutions again -- marriage, home ownership, et cetera? >> guest: i think that on the issues of marriage and home ownership, we have to see a culture that is more authentic around both of those things. millenials care deeply about authenticity and when you think about how real estate has been sold, and how the commercialization of the marriage industry and the whole economy around marriage and -- i think that has seemed to a generation that was looking to find love perhaps later in life, or looking to -- has been around the second generation of people going into those experiences, and it all seems very phony, seems very over the top. and frankly, people in the real
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estate business haven't had to answer the question, why should you buy -- why is it important to buy a home? just had to be able to convince you why this home is the home for you. and people similarly people selling cars have never had to convince people why you need a car they just said you should by a ford, not a chrysler. so, that is the challenge. these institutions have to wrestle with that fundamental question, which is admittedly difficult for industries that have not had to do that. but that's what this generation is doing. they're forcing disruption and forcing industries to think about these things in a new way, and do some really hard work on these issues. this is what they have to do. this is not a generation that is just going to sit there and accept business as usual. >> host: well, let's talk a little bit more about digital media, social metworking. one of the first things people think about when they think of
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millenial is online, their online capabilities, interests in social media and social networking. what kind of lessons should everyone else learn from millenials about that kind of technology and that kind of communication? >> guest: millenials tillly straddle the line between being born in a world where they didn't have smartphones initially, when they were born, they didn't have -- spend high school on wikipedia. they sort of had these -- the ability to begroundded -- be grounded initially in the predigital world. they understand the basic fundmentams, and yet at the same time we have grown up alongside of technology. i talk about it in the book that the way we have grown up with technology, it's sort of like a good friend in that we have been the early adopters and the people that pushed these technology forward and have been
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there in key momentums in our life. so there's -- we'll always be able to seamless the incorporate them into our lives and what we're doing. other generations, it doesn't mean that they can't learn how to use those. i mean, people of any generation can learn any of these platforms and people of all generations are being incredibly successful on twitter and facebook. what is different is the arab spring is a good example of this change. people all over the middle east, of all ages, have been disaffected for some time but it was young people who war able to light that spark in large part because of their awareness to the rest of the world bus of their technology access and also because they saw something that other generations didn't. they saw the ability of using these tools and it came intuitively to them, that digital tools could be a way to scale their impact. and i think that is something
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that we haven't -- that other generations don't have that sort of intuitive, i'm going right to this. this is the way forward. and that ability to be sort of the first responders. >> host: you talk about the other generations and you reference mark didn't an expert on technology and you say, he goes on to point out other quaint examples of the digital immigrant accent, including phone calls to ask someone if they received an e-mail. printing out a document toed it by hand, showing people a web site on your peter instead of e-mailing them a link. that sounds like my parents. >> guest: and that's -- something in a good way, the idea of having an accent, and the native immigrant divide is a good way of thinking about it. people -- other people, other generations can learn the technology but there may in some
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cases be some kind of alkebulan -- accent present, men and you have that eight accent it's hard to be a leader in that technology. >> host: i think it's safe to say that social networking, twitter and facebook, have really dem mott contract tiesed news con expulsion production as well. you can be a producer on facebook and as a consumer i can aggregate my consumption experience and pick out and customize the way that i receive my news. on twitter i can follow certain people and i get only the news i want. and i can filter out other news. how has that changed media and how will millenals continue to shape the media landscape going forward? >> guest: it's definitely changed the economics models of media. you're a television host, and as you well know, frequently you'll
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probably do a show and you'll hear from someone a few days later, great comment on your show, because nobody is watching it in real time. certainly people in this generation, the ability thatle what is going on online is a constant conversation. i have a -- regularly check the hash tag on millenials on twitter, and there was a report that came out a couple -- almost a week being now about millenials and how they're the most stressed generation, and people are still talking about that and tweeting about that every day, because' people are just coming to that news. so, while there's a sense of real-time communication there's also a delay and that leads to people always talking about everything, and sort of constant, if you think about it like a tennis serve, volley back and forth between consumers and producers and how new content rises to the top.
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thick it's made it particularly difficult for our political system because there is no ability to pause. what used to be we had a media system where, at the end of the day, everybody went to bed, the show was over, the newspaper editors did their work. now we have a constant feedback loop, which i think, particularly for other general races is overwhelming. >> host: 0 overwhelming for my generation, that lack of pause and that continual news cycle makes it exciting. and fast-paced and always something to talk about, but it does sort of create this never-ending loop of experience, where ideas live forever because you're constantly referencing back to them, and you're constantly trying to keep up with developing moments. >> guest: yeah. i think that you also have the sense that everybody can have a different take on a piece of information, and that -- and a
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sense that you have to comment. i think that, as journalists have gotten into this, initially a lot of journalists were uncomfortable about wading into the world of twitter because they said, i'm a columnist, i write my column and i don't want to comment on everything in 140 characters. so i think there is a little overabundance of content, and i think one of the challenges of this generation is figuring out how to curate well. >> host: let's talk about a political moment, talk about "occupy wall street." that had a big effect on millenials. it was influenced by millenals. in many ways a millenial project. what it successful or something of a failure? >> guest: it's important to point out that the up a up a wall street movement, although was characterizes as a youth-driven movement was actually not dominated by young people. a handful of the voices and
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leaders were millenials. actually they did an analysis of who was at the protests in new york. only 23% of the people there were under the age of 30. so, i think that is something that we should keep in mind, because there's been a long history of youth being associated with protests. and so when people see protest they assume youth and there were who young people there, but i think that what that movement did was it helped push a little bit of a dialogue about the relationship between business and people, the relationship of how people felt about corporations, how people felt about finance. i think that conversation had already been started before that. but i think one of the things that was particularly interesting is as that movement was going on, you saw millenials
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who were there at "occupy wall street," celebrating the life of steve jobs, which took place -- his death took place at the same moment that was going on. and it was this great way of showing they we that millenials believe that corporations are part of our world, while they can stand and say we disagree with the financial practices, we can still celebrate a great corporate titan and leader and innovator and thinker, and being able to hold both beliefs at the same time is one of the hallmarks of this generation, we can hold in our head, we don't like these approximates but we celebrate the great things that american business and american leaders can do. >> host: a lot of people will remember looking back on "occupy wall street," a lot of news clips of someone putting the microphone and a camera in a young person's face and asking why you're here, and young
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people not really being able to define the point. and actually, that might have been by design, and that might have been a success -- a mark of success. eric hopper writes in true believer, the nature of mass movement, that successful mass movements are vague. they are undisciplined, because if you're specific about your goals, once you reach it, the movement dies. the mom is over. and in keeping the goal of "occupy wall street" also vague, maybe that helped to prolong its life. >> guest: i think that's sort of hits the nail right on the head, because if you think about how social change took place in the 1960s, if you did dissipate opposite the vietnam war was end and the civil right act was passed, since so much of the activism of the people in that generation have been opinioned around those two things, the
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movement for social change dissipated in a lot of ways after that and people felt free to go back amongst their lives and in this generation they're a more sustainable activism, this idea we can push things forward through more vague kind of ways, and "occupy wall street" is one example of that, in that it helped push a conversation, which i think today is -- can be just as important as pushing specific action, because so much of our world is driven by this media loop and this conversational loop. so i think that does play an important role. >> host: what is on the horizon in terms of activism and issue? what's the next big thing? sunny think we're starting to see more and more action around energy, and climate change. we saw recently this protest in washington around climate change, which is one of the
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largest, allegedly in history movements around climate change, and there were a lot of young people participating in that. but at the end of the day people go back home and do things in their daily lives that help push that, and i'm really excited about what young people are doing in energy. i'm really -- i'm very optimistic about people, instead of big institutions, environmental lobbies, lobbying for more federal money to be appropriated, to alternative energy research, millenial's are doing it. starting crowd -- a great company that is crowd-funded itself into existence that is doing solar energy and stuff, and a lot of these things are start bid millenals because we say why wait for the government to do is? clear live this is a big political fight. we can do this on our own, we can find ways to do that. >> host: well, that's a perfect segway because that impulse feels instinctively private sector and conservative, and
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conservatives have had a very tough time reaching millenial voters, and marketing their message to millenial voteres. but sounds like the frustration among millenials, why wait for the government to do something we can do ourselves -- might be an area where conservatives can tap into that small government, entrepreneurial, independent impulse that might appeal really well to that group of voters. >> guest: i think it definitely is a possible opportunity for republicans to help engage with young people more. i think both parties need to be aware of the fickleness of this generation. this is not a party focused generation who is going to support democrats or republicans through and through, and there are a lot of opportunities, but i think the impulse towards solutions, the impulse towards
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private sector solutions, or nonprofit solutions -- i think it's both, it's important to note -- is driven by the frustration with the politicians, so i think the best thing they could do would be to show more openness and show more -- particularly on these social issues i think -- conservatives can make up a lot of ground. >> host: let's talk about the social issues. some have described it to me -- to be honest, a particular project of interest to me. i want conservativism as a partisan i want conservatism to have better -- it's been described to me that conservatism means to reconcile with gay marriage, and twitter. is it that simple? sunny don't know it's that
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simple but reach of those things is representative of a set of issues on which conservatives could be doing better, and, frankly, i think some democrats could also be doing better on some of these issues. i think that the millenials like the -- believe in government. they believe the government has a role to play in their lives. they believe there's a place for government in looking out for people, which is obviously a fairly liberal concept in theory. and then they also believe we should have a responsible fiscal policy, which is a very conservative idea. they also believe in gay marriage. we want to hold all those beliefs at the same time so both parties need to adapt towards that sort of middle ground more if they really want to find a home for millenial voters, because that's what represents us. it's not having to choose between the set of beliefs and the other. >> host: well, there's that old
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adage that says if you're young and you want aren't libol you have no heart, and if you're scold you're not a conservative you have no brain. what were woo the mill helpal say to that matrix? >> there's a lot of talk that ultimately all these mill helpals when they grow up, they're going to become conservative. i think the history about that phrase, there's something -- i think that hoyt doesn't show it. it shows when people's impressions of these parties and values are formed when they're younger, and they tend to stick with them for a long time. so, republicans have a window that perhaps is closing very quickly, to be impressionable on the mill helpals and to reach out to them, and has to be more than hip-hop lyrics and has to be more than sort of just saying, hey, i'm cool, because that is so fake.
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that is so fake. and i see a lot of politics doing that as a way to reach out to young people. young people want to be spoken to like they're adults and that is what barack obama did so well in 2008. he spent a lot of time going to college campuses and asked young people for their votes, which is something that i don't think politicians have done enough of. just gone to a campus and said, here i am, i'm cool, it's great to see you guys, but actually asking young people for their vote in the same way they ask people of other generations for their vote. >> host: if they go to college campuses at all. mitt romney and that campaign was criticized for largely avoiding college voters and maybe sort of giving up on them and writing them off. >> guest: yeah. i think that history is when you actually go to young street voters and reach out to them you have a chance of getting their vote. barack obama in 2008 -- one of the fascinating things about his campaign was that he actually
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rap a program in iowa, geared on high school students called barack stars because in iowa you can vote in the primary if you're 17 and will be 18 in the general. so he went to all these high schools targeting high school seniors and juniors who were 17 and engaging them and that is one of the reasons he actually won the iowa caucus is because of this unprecedented engagement on the part of 17-year-old high school students which he identified as a potential audience. >> host: will wishes 2016 on the horizon -- >> guest: never too early. >> host: what does a democrat running, let's say it's hillary clinton -- or a republican running -- let's say it's chris christie, for example -- what do they need to keep in mind when targeting this specific generation of voters? >> guest: i think this generation wants to hear a positive message, and wants to
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be brought into the table. because this generation has been put on the chopping block in a lot of ways in our political process. we have been left out. i also loved to see them engaging more young people in their campaign. one of the reasons barack obama -- you can people always work on campaigns but there were more people who worked on political campaigns in 2008 than any election in history. more young people were engaged in the process, and the candidate who can help bring those people in really can help usher in a movement. if you look at 2008 and the long run of hoyt, i believe that the campaign of barack obama will be much more important than his election to the development of this generation, because that campaign engaged so many people in -- who have now gone on to do so many different things and created a spark, and i hope in 2016 the can be another movement like that, spread by the candidate, either republican or
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democrat or both. >> host: you talk about ways in which politicians like barack obama engaged in popular culture. some politician does that successfully, some don't. but let's flip that around. how accurately or fairly does popular culture judge and represent and depict millenials? >> guest: i don't know if you have seen this new netflix series, house of cards. >> host: i have. >> guest: i love it. a lot of people in this generation got their grounding in politics watching the west wing, long time ago, and now as older millenials, we're watching house of cards and it's an interesting reflection because both of them deal with young people in politics. in the west wing they're the people running running in this y idealistic which is a reflection of the spirit of the time and the possibility of politics. and then you see the zoe barnes
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character in house of card whose is an opportunistic, and entrepreneurial person who is taking these different opportunities and trying to work through the system displaying the system and using it to her advantage which i think is perhaps more representative of where millenials are at now. think it's a great show and incredibly cynical in its view of politics. more realistic about how everybody feels about politics. those are good book ends for how this generation feels about politics. >> host: i think when maybe a lot of older people think about millen reallies and popular culture, they think.jersey shore. what do they think about girls, with -- almost tongue in cheek, make fun of the young hipster. are those unfair short-hand versions of what young people are like today? >> guest: a generation of 80 million people you're going to find people do.
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>> you're going to find snook snooki. >> guest: exactly. that's should not be michigan that's kriz seed it. any group of people, always going to be people -- when we talk about generations, we're talking about what are the most important things that are happening in this generation that are having an impact on other generations? the fact they're millenals going out to party doesn't have an impact on any other generation. but we talk about girls, that's representative of the experience of a small number of millenals and what is interesting about the show, dunham has been able to put on a television show and write it and bring that and bypass the traditional establishment television and media culture to present very different image, a star of a television show, somebody who is not a size zero and that has been a good thing for the power
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of how this generation can create a television show and be part of the culture and be dominating the conversation that all generations are having. >> host: in aedition to arena dunham and facebook, who are some other mill helpal leaders, either entrepreneurs or politics or pop culture you think will be paving the way and people to watch? >> guest: in the book there are a lot of great stories of people who are doing that. and i think we may know more of the sexy examples. two great guys in ohio that i talk about in the book, a guy named mark rembert and taylor stucker and they start an organization in their town when they saw the unemployment and the economic crisis in wilmington, unemployment was as high is a 19%. and they came home were and were devastated about what the economy has done to the counsel. so they started an organization to transform the residents of
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the community into agents of economic change. they create -- brought young people back to be fellows and teach florists and shop owners how to use social media, how to learn new skills. they created a program to encourage residents to buy local products. and they're a great example of how young people in -- not in cities, not in the spotlight are doing this out of hard work, to move issues forward, and to make impact. and i think people like them are representative of people all over the country who have been newly empowered to create change >> host: looking bag over history every generations nope for. some what do you think the millenial generation will be known for in 50 years? >> guest: i think we'll be nope as the people who pushed the country and the world in a better direction, who helped bring the world in a little bit of a course correction, from
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where it's been. i don't think this generation will be -- the generation is going to solve every problem in our world. i don't think any generation can do that but we're definitely on a good course to help change some of the ways we're think about our world and be more responsible, to be more socially minded. the ways re we've pushed businesses, the success wes have had. electing presidents, topping dictators, impressive. creating companies connecting a billion people around the world. so, the results are impressive-especially for a generation that has not turned 30 yet. >> host: we'll be interested in seeing how this generation progresses, and i know we'll all be keeping an eye out. david burstein, thinks for joining us. >> guest: thank you.
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>> that was after words, become tv's signature program in which authors of the latest nonfiction books are interviewed.
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